- UpDoc is the world’s first clinically validated, clinician-directed AI that manages medications and chronic conditions
- Strategic funding round led by Polaris Partners with participation from Mayo Clinic, Oxeon Partners, and Eli Lilly & Company
- Partnerships with Microsoft, Google Cloud, SCCIPA with research conducted at Stanford Medicine
- Strategic collaborations with UCSF Health will focus on improving health equity and with the American Heart Association will leverage expertise as a member of the American Heart Association Innovator’s Network
- UpDoc ushers in a new model of care delivery – Remote Patient Intervention (RPI) – that aims to deliver a clinician-directed AI provider to every patient’s home and bridge gaps in health equity
PALO ALTO, Calif., Jan. 5, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — UpDoc, the first company with a conversational AI platform that manages medication prescriptions, today exited stealth to announce a strategic funding round led by Polaris Partners with participation from Oxeon Partners, Eli Lilly & Company and Mayo Clinic. This follows landmark research conducted at Stanford Medicine and paves the way for additional collaborations with Microsoft, Google, Santa Clara County Independent Physician Association (SCCIPA), UCSF Health, Mayo Clinic, and the American Heart Association. UpDoc aims to deliver a clinician-directed AI provider to every patient’s home through accessible technology that improves access to high quality, affordable care. All care delivered through the AI is prescribed by physicians or clinical pharmacists who oversee the platform.
Taking place during a time of market uncertainty, the successful fundraise is evidence that investors continue to see the opportunity in early-stage game-changing AI companies, particularly those founded by high-conviction teams with a hands-on approach.
UpDoc has secured strategic partnerships with elite organizations including Microsoft, Google Cloud, and SCCIPA for research, funding, development, and cloud and AI infrastructure aimed at ushering in a new era of tech-enabled care. It is also planning to bring its technology to Stanford Medicine and UCSF Health, focused on using the platform to improve health equity. Microsoft Azure will serve as the company’s primary cloud provider. Powered by Large Language Models (LLMs) and a proprietary clinical intelligence platform, UpDoc’s engagement engine incorporates health literacy, illness perception and cultural perspectives to bridge gaps in health equity. By scaling provider reach, the AI assistant is also designed to improve efficiency and reduce clinical burnout.
Sharif Vakili and Ashwin Nayak, UpDoc Founders, said: “Our mission is to expand access to safe, effective, and affordable care for the millions of Americans who suffer from chronic diseases. We see UpDoc as a technological accelerant of value-based care with the potential to bring both higher quality and more affordable care.”
The model of care delivery where an AI acts on Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) data to deliver care has been coined by the founders as “Remote Patient Intervention” (RPI). RPI was performed for the first time in a prospective randomized controlled trial at Stanford Medicine published in JAMA Network Open, where it more than doubled improvement in diabetes control compared to standard of care. RPI is conducted under clinical oversight.
Over the 8-week study period at Stanford, 81% of patients who had their diabetes managed by the AI achieved glycemic control of their diabetes compared to 25% of patients who received traditional care. Patients in the trial managed by the AI had 5x more prescription changes, and needed far fewer doctor’s appointments to get their diabetes under control. The AI-managed patients also had 60% greater medication adherence.
Gary Swart, Partner at Polaris, remarked, “Healthcare systems are constantly evolving as new products and technologies come to market. Every once in a while, something truly transformational arrives. With UpDoc, we believe we are witnessing the next evolution of clinical care – today. Sharif and Ashwin are innovative entrepreneurs who have created a generational product – they have our wholehearted support as we embark on UpDoc’s journey together.”
UpDoc’s conversational AI is optimized for clinical accuracy and patient engagement, powered by multiple state-of-the-art LLMs. The company is collaborating with Microsoft to leverage GPT-4 through the Azure Open AI Service. The company has also established collaborations with Google Cloud to leverage MedLM and fine-tuned models through Vertex AI.
Peter Durlach, Corporate Vice President & Chief Strategy Officer of Microsoft Health & Life Sciences, commented, “We look forward to collaborating with UpDoc as they help pioneer the use of patient-facing conversational AI for remote patient interventions. Microsoft’s advancements in AI, world-class research, and our expertise in empowering solutions for the healthcare industry with our Azure cloud will give UpDoc the platform they need to help clinicians manage patient care with a technology enabled solution that ultimately fosters better health outcomes at lower costs.”
The UpDoc co-founders have been working together for four years as Stanford physicians. Today, Sharif Vakili is a practicing primary care physician at Stanford Medicine and Entrepreneur Advisor at Polaris Partners. Ashwin Nayak is a practicing hospitalist at Stanford Medicine, board-certified Clinical Informatician, and leading AI researcher and software developer.
Christopher Sharp, MD, Chief Medical Information Officer at Stanford Health Care, said, “I am proud to have two clinical colleagues excel on the world stage. I congratulate Sharif and Ashwin for their research spearheading this AI-powered breakthrough in the practice of medicine.”
Desi Kotis, PharmD, chief pharmacy executive at UCSF Health, said, “Medication management is one of the most significant issues in chronic care, especially in communities that have limited access to care providers. We are eager to see what opportunities AI can offer in helping patients make sense of their medications and better manage their health.”
UpDoc has developed the first conversational AI platform that manages medication prescriptions and chronic disease. The company employs state-of-the-art large language models optimized for clinical accuracy and patient engagement to create physician-directed “AI encounters” that augment physician encounters. This model of care delivery where Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) data is acted on by an AI to deliver clinical care is known as Remote Patient Intervention (RPI). RPI is conducted under clinical oversight.
RPI and the UpDoc platform were invented by the founders of UpDoc who are practicing primary care and internal medicine physician leaders whose mission is to move the needle in US healthcare by democratizing access to affordable, high-quality care. RPI is designed to be under complete clinical oversight, and the company leverages collaborations with leading academic institutions, medical societies and clinical experts to ensure patient safety and efficacy ushering this new frontier in care delivery.
UpDoc CEO and cofounder, Sharif Vakili, is a practicing primary care physician at Stanford Medicine and Entrepreneur Advisor at Polaris Partners. UpDoc incoming CTO and cofounder Ashwin Nayak is a practicing hospitalist at Stanford Medicine, board-certified Clinical Informatician, and leading AI researcher and software developer.
Sharif Vakili, Cofounder and CEO
Anthony Steel, Steel Comms for UpDoc